About the Institute

Smart Growth America’s Leadership Institute is dedicated to helping state and local elected, civic and business leaders design and implement effective smart growth strategies. We believe that plans, policies, codes and regulations should encourage healthier neighborhoods; promote quality investments; eliminate red-tape; provide incentives to level the playing field for developers; foster active citizenship; and, safeguard the future for our children. Smart Growth America’s Leadership Institute was founded in 2003.

About Governor Parris N. Glendening

Governor Parris N. Glendening is President of Smart Growth America’s Leadership Institute. In this role, Governor Glendening works with leaders across the nation to understand and adopt policies that are effective in rebuilding state and local economies and helping communities grow smarter.

As Governor of Maryland from 1995-2003, one of his primary agenda items was Smart Growth. He led the creation of a groundbreaking smart growth initiative that focused on using the entire $23 billion state budget as an incentive for smart growth. Before becoming Governor, Parris N. Glendening was a local elected official for more than 20 years. He began public service in 1973 as a city councilman in Hyattsville and was later elected to the Prince George’s County Council in 1974. In 1982 he was elected County Executive of Prince George’s County, a post he held for three consecutive terms.

Leadership Institute staff

Roger Millar is the Director of the Smart Growth America’s Leadership Institute, which includes the Governor’s Institute on Community Design and other technical assistance programs for state and local government. Prior to joining Smart Growth America, Roger held leadership positions in the public and private sectors, most recently as Director of the Missoula, Montana City/County Office of Planning and Grants. His experience provides him with a broad understanding of the built environment; federal, state, and local policies and standards; and the relationships between land use, transportation, and the environment. Projects in which Roger played a leadership role, particularly the development plan for Portland’s Pearl District and the planning and design of the Portland Streetcar, are seen as national models for urban livability. He has also managed or participated in signature projects for rural, resort and gateway communities throughout the American West.

Roger is a Fellow of the American Society of Civil Engineers, a member of the American Institute of Certified Planners and a Certified Floodplain Manager. He is a member of the ASCE Committee for America’s Infrastructure, which produces the ASCE Report Card for America’s Infrastructure. He is also Past President of the Oregon Section of ASCE and of the Montana Association of Planners. He graduated from the University of Virginia in 1982. Roger can be reached at rmillar [at] smartgrowthamerica [dot] org.